Newby Advice - Masks, Adjustments

General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
sleepmouse
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2023 1:42 pm

Newby Advice - Masks, Adjustments

Post by sleepmouse » Tue Mar 14, 2023 2:04 pm

Hello CPAP Talk:

Want to start by saying how much I appreciate all of you and this forum. Its an oasis in a desert of industry "content."

I'm a 33/yr male. Fit but living in a rather grim east coast city. I was recently diagnosed with mild apnea: I wake up a lot, never feel appropriately rested, snore often but not loudly. I was prescribed and purchased a ResMed AirSense 10 AutoSet. I have an "ResMed AirFit™ N10 CPAP Nasal Mask - Standard." I do not have a heated hose. Doctor recommended starting at 8 to 15 and to reduce to 5 to 15 is if it was too much pressure to start.

I have yet to actually have more than an hour or two of sleep with my CPAP. The first night was a disaster, and lead to a feeling of hyperventilation (tingling in extremities, feeling like I'm going to pass out etc). This was mainly because it felt like I couldn't properly exhale before the thing forced more air down my nose. At 5AM I got up and consulted CPAPTalk where I learned about the setting on my ResMed to make exhalation easier. That helped, but I've still yet to properly sleep with the thing, and I wondered if this was maybe the masks fault.

A few things:
* I find that it puts a lot of pressure on the lip space just beneath my septum. I've adjusted to the straps, but the pressure of the mask pushing into my skin there is quite uncomfortable. Perhaps I should find a new mask?
* On the topic of ventilation, a lot of air seems to escape out the back of my mask. When I go to hug my partner at night, she gets gusts of cold air on her back. Is that typical?
* Last night, when I woke up from a very light sleep due to irritation of the mask, I noticed that my pillow was damp. Most likely from the humidity of the mask. Is that also typical?
* Finally, I am a side sleeper who tends to try to sleep on his front. Does anyone have any recommendations for working with the mask in such positions?

Much appreciated my apnesiacs.

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Miss Emerita
Posts: 3460
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2018 8:07 pm

Re: Newby Advice - Masks, Adjustments

Post by Miss Emerita » Tue Mar 14, 2023 3:13 pm

Welcome! Let me take a crack at some of your questions; I'm sure other people can say more.

The front of your mask has a vent so the CO2 in your exhalations can get out.

You might do better with a pillow mask, maybe the ResMed P10. I think you'll find it puts less pressure on your lip just below your septum. If you try the P10, be sure to get a fit pack, which will have small, medium, and large pillows for you to try. It isn't always obvious ahead of time what will work best for you.

Try setting up your machine outside your bedroom during the day or evening and using it while you watch TV, read, or do stuff on your devices. This will speed up your adaptation to what is a fairly weird new experience.

While EPR setting are you using now? (That's the setting you figured out, which drops your pressure when you exhale.)

If the air in your room is cool, you can get condensation in your hoses or mask. You could try putting a hose cover (aka hose cozy) on your hoses -- maybe a fleecy one that will provide some insulation. You can also play around with the level of humidity you're using, trying both more and less.

You might benefit a lot from using Oscar (see below), which is free, open-source software that provides a wealth of information about what's going on while you're using the machine. This could be very helpful in getting you to your optimal settings.
Oscar software is available at https://www.sleepfiles.com/OSCAR/

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ChicagoGranny
Posts: 14514
Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:43 pm
Location: USA

Re: Newby Advice - Masks, Adjustments

Post by ChicagoGranny » Tue Mar 14, 2023 3:28 pm

sleepmouse wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2023 2:04 pm
* I find that it puts a lot of pressure on the lip space just beneath my septum. I've adjusted to the straps, but the pressure of the mask pushing into my skin there is quite uncomfortable. Perhaps I should find a new mask?
Not yet. Find your mask on youtube and watch some videos on fitting and adjusting. It sounds like your mask is overtightened.
sleepmouse wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2023 2:04 pm
* On the topic of ventilation, a lot of air seems to escape out the back of my mask. When I go to hug my partner at night, she gets gusts of cold air on her back. Is that typical?
Air is escaping out the back of your mask?? That mask has vents on the front. Check your 95% leak level on your machine's display each morning. Instructions for getting into the clinical menu and viewing the reports are on youtube.
sleepmouse wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2023 2:04 pm
* Last night, when I woke up from a very light sleep due to irritation of the mask, I noticed that my pillow was damp. Most likely from the humidity of the mask. Is that also typical?
No, not in an optimized system. It's a typical startup problem. See - wiki/index.php/Rainout
sleepmouse wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2023 2:04 pm
* Finally, I am a side sleeper who tends to try to sleep on his front. Does anyone have any recommendations for working with the mask in such positions?
Dr. Falcon wrote "the book" on stomach sleeping with a CPAP mask - http://www.uarsrelief.com/sleeppositions.html

As you continue to optimize your therapy, please stick to this one thread so members can easily see your history.

Ciao

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ChicagoGranny
Posts: 14514
Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:43 pm
Location: USA

Re: Newby Advice - Masks, Adjustments

Post by ChicagoGranny » Tue Mar 14, 2023 4:04 pm

Which city?